|Elizabeth English: Laird of the Mist|
(Paperback), ISBN 0-515-13190-3
At once, I liked English's protagonists -- Deirdre, a trapped, but determined wife and mother, and Alistair Kirallen, a strong but sensitive outcast. Thrown together under adverse circumstances (Alastair works as a sword for hire, and Deirdre seeks to flee the claws of her husband's clan) these two, plus a wee sprite of a girl named Maeve and a dog named Finn spell "family."
Bringing the family together, however, doesn't prove easy. Politics in his own clan keep Alistair at bay, while the dynamics of the Brodie clan force Deirdre on toward Ireland. Thankfully, a war between clans keeps the lovers at Ravenspur Manor where the romance heats up until the mysterious appearance of a man from Deirdre's past throws another wrench in their future.
Built around the premise of a medieval poem entitled "The Twa Corbies" ("The Two Ravens" -- a popular ballad often studied in college poetry classes) Laird of the Mist weaves in an almost seamless lesson in the symbolism and meaning of the rhyme. I enjoyed the unusual technique of weaving a poem into the plot and its effect on the story. The poem, as a harbinger, added to the suspense and tension. Besides, "The Twa Corbies" ranks among my favorite poems of all time.
Laird of the Mist opened my eyes to the talent of Elizabeth English. I will be sure to keep my eyes peeled for English's Border Bride and Once Forbidden.
Click here to read Kassie Walters' review of The Temptress.
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